Cardigan Mountain School A boarding and day school for boys in grades 6 through 9

From the Campaign Director

Sandra Hollingsworth

Dear Members of the Cardigan Community,

Almost a decade ago, The Campaign for Cardigan 2020 began as a comprehensive fundraising initiative focused on raising $50 million for our School’s capital, endowment, and operational needs. It’s exciting and very humbling to share with you that, when the Campaign closed on June 30, 2020, just over $62.5 million in gifts and pledges had been committed to Cardigan.

This was a direct result of collaborative efforts in visioning, strategic planning, volunteerism, execution, and phenomenal philanthropic support. The Cardigan community’s generosity rose to support ambitious goals: to improve the quality of residential life; to establish and grow endowment funds for the academic program, professional development, and facilities; and to support the operations of the School. Your gifts provided for both the short- and long-term health of the School. While thousands of our community members supported The Annual Fund for Cardigan during the Campaign, others made visionary gifts to endowment for financial aid, professional development, academic programs, and facilities.

Significant campus projects illustrate how our joint efforts have improved daily life on The Point. The Commons provide a central heartbeat for the School, enabling the community to share meals and fellowship, gather together for special meetings and recreation, and enjoy the convenience of a centralized mailroom and school store. The Johnson-Wakely Fitness Center supports our wellness, while the Marrion Center’s new locker room matches the high standard set by our athletic program. Complete renovations to Hayward Hall and the iconic Clark-Morgan Hall, as well as the construction of the new dormitory, McCusker Hall, ensure that both faculty members and students have a residential experience worthy of the Cardigan name. The Campaign’s final projects, completed this summer, support Cardigan’s academic programs: Bronfman offers modernized science classrooms, while Wallach—our center for Innovative Design, Applied Engineering, and Creative Arts—is the capstone project of the Campaign. In addition to academic workspaces, Wallach houses the Gates Program, The Williams Wood Shop, the E.P.I.C. (Engineering Possibilities, Innovation and Creativity) Center, and our arts program, including a breathtaking art gallery and three classrooms. Our boys are already using these critical spaces to “learn by doing,” applying what they learn in traditional classrooms within a creative, experimental environment. 

It has been a transformational time for Cardigan.

These remarkable accomplishments seem even more striking given the duration of the Campaign, the transitions in leadership, and—not least—the realities of living in the time of a pandemic. I return to my conviction that they reflect the strength and commitment of our community. 

While acknowledging every contribution to the Campaign is not possible, it’s important to note some key contributions. During the strategic planning process, a diverse team worked incredibly hard to produce a clear vision and plan for the School. Strong leadership from the Board of Trustees required intense collaboration (hundreds of hours!) between committee members, the head of school, staff, faculty, and volunteers. As a result, the School was able to approve The Strategic Plan for Cardigan 2020 and translate it into concrete action. These efforts ensured that every Campaign initiative built upon a strong foundation.

During implementation, a number of teams moved the process forward. Members of The Campaign for Cardigan 2020 Committee worked steadily to formulate fundraising strategies, develop relationships, and seek support for each identified priority. The Communications and Marketing Committee, with support from the communications staff, helped shape and share the vision to inspire support throughout the Campaign. The business office team and Finance Committee provided guidance on budgets and approvals at every step along the way, while members of the Academic and Real Estate Committees consulted with architects on the best designs to support our programs. And of course the Facilities Department worked tirelessly to complete every capital project, to a very high standard. These committed individuals, along with my past and present colleagues on the development staff, were absolutely critical to the success of a long, very rewarding journey toward this shared goal. And throughout everything, many generous donors—at all levels—responded to our call to action. 

In short, the community came together the way we know Cardigan always will. I continue to be deeply grateful to all who contributed, in any way. You are why the Campaign achieved so much, and why our School is as strong today as it has ever been. Cardigan is truly a leader in the education of middle school boys, and we should be very proud.


Sandra M. Hollingsworth
Director, The Campaign for Cardigan 2020

Spring 2021 Feature: Up and to the Right

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